Weekly Update: November 7th through November 11th ~ CONGRATULATIONS BDMB! STRAIGHT SUPERIORS!

Scroll below for a wrap up of the week from Mr. Langford! We are so proud of you! #iegyb

Looking Ahead! (Visit the Calendar Page for more dates!) 

  • November 14th: All County Auditions @ Lake Buena Vista High School
  • November 15th: Band Parent Meeting 7 PM (Band Room)
  • November 17th: John Land Trust Jazz Gala Event (7th Period Jazz Band)
  • November 19th: FSU Band Day! Details/Costs/Etc. Coming Soon!
  • Winter Prism Week!
    • 11.28.22 Monday Rehearsal 2:45 PM – 5 PM
    • 11.29.22 Tuesday Rehearsal 2:45 PM – 5 PM
    • 11.30.22 Wednesday Rehearsal 1:30 PM – 4 PM
    • 12.1.22 Thursday Performance #1 7 PM
    • 12.2.22 Friday, Performance #2 7 PM 
  • December 3rd: Apopka Holiday Jazz Performance @ Apopka Amphitheater
    • 9 AM – 11 AM (All 3 Jazz Bands)
  • December 10th: Apopka Christmas Parade – Full BDMB
    • 8 AM – 12 PM


Visit www.cgphoto.online and use the code below to view your child’s photos! The gallery will be open for THREE WEEKS ONLY! Act fast! #iegyb


FSU Band Day! 

Visit School Pay to secure your bus seat for FSU Band Day! $20 per person to help offset transportation costs! (Students & Parents) Game tickets are free. A schedule for the day will be posted as soon as the game kick off time is locked in. #iegyb

Our Past 168… 

In a moment of reflection after our Marching MPA on Saturday I offer the following ~ not so brief ~ words… 

The past 168 hours have been an absolute roller coaster. This was our penultimate week. The culmination. The pinnacle. Thanks to Hurricane Ian, what would have normally been a great, focused week of preparation and execution became chaos, albeit super fun chaos, that involved three pep rallies, three football games, great in class rehearsals, the spirit dress up days that were being made up from Homecoming, and a fantastic day for our Marching MPA. The exhilaration of winning the Tuesday game on a last second field goal, securing the district championship, to having to get back to class bright and early the following morning… FOR ANOTHER PEP RALLY and later on that evening a powder puff game… just to finish off the week with a game against our cross-town rivals that went the other way on Friday…. To getting up on Saturday for an awesome day of Band! Oh yeah, and how could we forget… IT STARTED WITH HALLOWEEN! HA! This has been a week for the books. Truly a surreal experience! 

As I chatted with Mrs. Langford today about all that we have been blessed to experience this week, she summed it up well… It is not about what we “pull out” of our students, rather, it is what we “pour in” to them each and every day. You see, early in our career it was about the former, pushing them to excel and driving them to excellence. Yet, the older we get in this profession, we realize it is more about filling their tanks. Yes, they are still going to perform. Yes, we still want them to push. However, the performance is only part of it. It is the product of your instruction, pedagogy, inspiration, motivation, and whatever other things you can think of to call it. This is us pouring in to their lives. For those who stay in the profession long enough, this is exactly what we do as we continue to grow within our own leadership. 

This week was no exception. We knew about our schedule for a month. We knew that we would have a gauntlet type week ahead. And, we knew it would be done with pride and tenacity to finish off our season. On Monday, we discussed “adulting” in all classes, addressing what this cliche concept meant. We talked about how this week was truly an opportunity to adult, and to learn how to do just that. I speak with them often about these things in the following manner: “Is 18 the magic number to learn how to ‘adult’ “? These kiddos know and understand that maturation is a process, one that occurs over time as a result of your experiences, or, lack thereof. I would not want this experience to be any different for my own two sons, who are both members of our band family, nor any of my band members. 

We do marching band one day per week. My commitment to them is to keep us on track, working towards our goals, while encouraging them to join sports, clubs, etc. and truly learn how to manage a schedule and become well rounded. Not all of my colleagues feel the same, but I will always be committed to this concept. 100%. Will a performance suffer from time to time? Sure. But it is the performance 5-10 years down the road that I am prepping them for. Over the course of four years, there is a ton of learning to be done. Through this, the students begin to take ownership and understand the importance of commitment and follow through as a result – and more importantly – that it is absolutely possible to get many things done if you learn how to manage your 168. Not to say the road isn’t rough some days, but it is absolutely worth it. 

Back to this week… Rehearsals finished last Friday. So grateful to our admin for allowing us to have an in-school rehearsal during the hurricane make up day which allowed us to go back on track in finishing up our show. (As our season’s luck would have it, we had a Thursday ball game and came in bright and early right after it for this special day!) The kids responded well. Each of their three performances this week continued to grow and get better culminating in our Straight Superior performance at our Marching MPA on Saturday. Success comes in many forms, and for the Blue Darter Marching Band, it came in the form of rising to the top, in the final performance of our season. Our band is young. They are growing. Nearly 150 are freshmen or sophomores. AND THEY ARE SO AWESOME! I cannot begin to say how proud I am of each of them! 

Needless to say, but I will, none of this would be possible without the army that makes all of this happen. In APK we like to call it “The Village”. Our booster supporters that SELFLESSLY sacrifice for our students each and every week are the rock stars that make this possible. They push and work proactively (putting up with me and my crazy thoughts!) to ensure all I’s are dotted and t’s are crossed. They are the backbone of our success. I cannot thank them enough for what they pour into our children. Our student leadership has worked well this year to push their peers towards success. Many of them are still young and growing, and I could not think of a better way to learn success than to do it from a point of leading! I am grateful to each of them that have worked for our success! And to all of our students… you have been incredible. I cannot wait to get back in the saddle on Monday for our Winter Prism! So proud of you! 

To our staff, I love each of you. Your dedication, friendship, drive, and direction all play pivotal roles in the success of our students. If you are anything like me, you learn just as much from them as they do from you. I pray it has been an incredible year of growth for each of you in that regard. I cannot thank you enough for all that you are poured into our kiddos! THEY ARE BLESSED TO HAVE YOU! 

Finally, I have to thank my family. This year, unlike any other, has included having my two sons with me in the Blue Darter Band family. From the first day they stepped foot on campus for our Kick Off party in May, it has been a tremendous journey to see them grow and become young men that love being part of their band and total school family. The buy in, the ownership, and the camaraderie are amazing to see being instilled in their young lives! Couple their band membership with also having an AHS golfer, and an AHS swimmer in the mix and I found myself being the soccer mom without the mini-van! We were all over the map, and we made it happen. MANY learning moments along the way. And to Marla, your love and support is never lost on me. You are my best friend and my person. We hold each other up and this Fall has been no different. I cannot thank you enough for all that you have done for not only me, but our family. I love you more than words can adequately describe. 

I love what I do. I will always pour everything I have into it. I will never make excuses for how many kids are now showing up, how many resources we do not have that others have, or anything else that could potentially impact our performance in a negative way. We will always learn how to adapt, overcome, or find a way to tunnel through towards success. And remember, success looks different every day, more often than not it is not in the obvious forms of perfect performances, test scores, attendance, etc. It is found in the community that you build and the resolve that they find as a result of their connection and relationship to the body of your organization. 

If you have made it this far, thank you. You too are more than likely a solution and inspiration to those that you serve in your midst. I encourage you to know that you make a difference in the lives of others each and every day. Never forget that. You are a LIFE CHANGER! 

As one of our seniors said yesterday in their final speech, we are a diverse group from many different races, religions, philosophies and backgrounds that come together for a common goal. I will always be a fan of that. 

That is community. 

Thank you to everyone that had a part in the success of our community this Fall. More to come. The year is just getting started. 

I will close with our program mantra’s that we recite to conclude each rehearsal… 

Good People, Do Good Things. 

In Everything, Give Your Best. 

Now, go take a bath. 

Langford, Over and Out. #iegyb 

Fall 2022 Blue Darter Marching Band

Straight Superior Rating!

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